Placement (BB37)

“EVE Online sits on the frontier of social gaming, providing an entertainment environment like no other. The vibrant society of interacting and conflicting communities, both within the EVE client and without, is the driving force behind EVE’s success. However, the anonymity of internet culture combined with a competitive gaming environment encourages in-game behaviour to spread beyond the confines of the sandbox. Where is the line?”

“Excuse me …”


“I can’t help noticing this line you’ve drawn.”

“Do you like it? I think it’s my best work yet.”

“Well I have to say it’s lovely and straight, certainly. Nice definition and confidently drawn. I can’t help noticing, however, that it seems to be in the wrong place.”

“Wrong place? No, I don’t believe so …”

“Oh yes, most certainly the wrong place. See where mine is, over there; that’s about where yours should be. Yours might end up sitting a little to the left or the right of mine, depending on your point of view; but certainly not all the way over here.”

“I like it here, I wouldn’t be comfortable with mine all the way over there.”

“Well, I respect your feelings on the matter, but I have to insist on you erasing this line and putting one near mine.”

“Now look here, I put a lot of thought into where my line should be drawn and I don’t think you have the right to tell me where I should draw it. Unless you can prove to me you have the authority to decide where I should draw my line, kindly keep your opinions to yourself.”

“It’s not a matter of opinions, my lad, oh no. See the shade of grey the sand is here? Very dark, I’m thinking. The sand where my line is has a much lighter shade of grey. Why, this sand, this is almost black.”

“Almost black? Almost black?! Trouble you have mate is the sand where you’ve drawn your line is damn near white and the glare has affected your eyes! If you will observe, there are several lines drawn by others even further over there. Maybe you should go and start on them first.”

“I did, but they weren’t very polite. Hence the limp and the arm cast.”

“I can’t say I blame them, really. Maybe you should just go back to the other side of your own line and stop trying to harass people with different standards to your own.”

“The trouble with people like you is you ruin it for everyone else. People with their lines over near me are very upset that you people over here and beyond are making things harder for us. We like the sand being nice and white and the more people there are with their lines in the grey sand the darker it gets.”

“You lot are delusional over there, too much brightness has fried your brains. There’s no harm in grey sand. White sand is boring, no interesting shades of grey at all, just endless dull old white.”

“But we like it white, it’s all nice and clean and comfortable….”

“Well, sod off back over there then and leave me alone!!


The thing about the law is, there is no line. There is no black and white. It is still our personal responsibility to draw a line for ourselves.

The law is endless shades of grey which have to be interpreted. There is a whole legal industry that exists (unfortunately) simply to interpret the law for those who cannot agree on what shade of grey a particular law ought to be.

Have some Eve players broken laws in the past? Yes, most likely.

Have any Eve players been prosecuted in the past? Not to my knowledge.

Because, although laws have been transgressed, no misdemeanour has been found worthy of prosecution.

Copying music is illegal. Copying movies is illegal. Breaking the speed limit is illegal. A few individuals get prosecuted for these things, but surprisingly few people consider these things a crime.

Such is the law.

Principles, on the other hand, are a very different kettle of fish.

Principles are the thoughts behind the laws, generally not pondered too much by the legal profession – people who tend to carry around rather large buckets of grey paint with which to harvest riches.

Where folk draw their lines is entirely their choice, but their choice is guided by their principles.

So, as usual, I must argue the topic rather than the question.

Let’s rewrite the last section of the topic, shall we?

Where is YOUR line?


I’m going to argue a further point.

The dark side of Eve; that part where all the nasty, slimy, greedy, traitorous, back stabbing, griefing, thieving, low life scum and villainy reside – it’s nowhere near as big as many think. 

Take this part of the topic – However, the anonymity of internet culture combined with a competitive gaming environment encourages in-game behaviour to spread beyond the confines of the sandbox.

OK, I’ll buy that. What I would ague with, though, is that the in-game behaviour that spreads beyond the confines of the sandbox is necessarily BAD behaviour.

Sorry, I’m not buying that little gem.

In my Eve life, I have been a member of a number of corps. I cannot think of a single player owned corp I have been in where I found more asshats than good blokes.

The corp I now call home is a rag tag collection of larrikins, mostly from Australia and New Zealand. There is a sprinkling of others from around the globe who for one reason or another make Aussie prime time their game time. It’s a pretty big corp. They are a GREAT bunch of people.

Prickly sometimes? Sure.

Irrational and weird? From an international perspective, probably.

Likely to rip each other off? Highly unlikely.

Liable to hunt someone who wrongs a corpmate from one end of the Eve universe to the other? Too right mate!

Interestingly, those corpmates from other parts of the world either quickly adapt to this mind set or move on.

Our alliance is currently part of the wonderfully named CFC. We regularly fleet with both Goons and Test.

True, SOME of those individuals tend to display behaviour which turns my stomach. The majority, however, seem like fairly normal people who enjoy blowing up internet pixels.

Here’s an interesting exercise to try. The next big fleet fight you’re in, observe local. Compare how many are posting sick porn, racial slurs and other fairly inhuman material to how many are actually in local.

Bet the posters are a tiny minority. I know this, because I’ve tried it.

So, sorry to burst the griefer/window licker bubble, but you folks are WAY outnumbered.

Most of Eve draws their lines in fairly mid to light grey sand.

So do I.

It’s all in the mind, you know.


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